Brighton War Memorial commemorating the fallen of The First World War
is situated in The Old Steine Gardens. The names of those who died are
included on two four sided pillars. There are 2,390 names including
33 who have been added to the top and bottom margins of the pillars.
The Memorial simply records the surname and initial(s) .
1921 the Parish Church of St.Peters has had in its possession two memorial
books recording the names of most of the fallen. The larger of the two
books is an updated version and a considerable improvement on its predecessor.
Both were kept on display until 1992, when because of vandalism, they
were withdrawn from public display. Both books are available to the
public on application to the Church authorities.
Fortunately for research purposes, the men are listed under their rank
and branch of service.
Army Officers, C,S,M’s, Sergeants, Corporals, Lance Corporals
and Privates, Riflemen, Bombardiers, Gunners, Drivers, Sappers,
Royal Navy Officers, Petty Officers, Seaman, Stokers, Wireless
Operators, Signallers, Boys, and a section for Naval ranks unknown.
Officers, Airmen, Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force.
strong) Unknown Ranks. Men whose rank and branch of the service
was unknown at the time and never updated.
of the Town Churches have their own Memorials, which in some cases,
for example, the Parish Church of St. Albans in Coombe Road, record
the individual’s Regiment, date of death and the location where
he died. 660 Brighton men lost their lives serving with the County Regiment
(The Royal Sussex) and these are easily identified in the Register for
the fallen of the Regiment kept at the West Sussex Record Office in
80 Volumes of ‘Soldiers Died in the Great War’ were reissued
by J.B. Hayward in conjunction with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission
in 1989. These official records, flawed though they are, have helped
enormously to identify large numbers of other ranks from the Infantry,
Cavalry, Artillery and Engineers. The four Volumes of ‘Cross of
Sacrifice’ published in the late 90’s have also been invaluable
finding the Officers, and Naval Ratings. The Air forces are largely
covered by Wilkinson’s work published many years ago. This is
very rare, but the reading room at the Imperial War Museum have a copy
Commonwealth War Graves Commission at Maidenhead has provided the means
to identify all grave locations. It is possible to hire the registers
for a small fee but general inquiries are not welcomed by telephone
unless the individual serviceman is a relative. Written requests are
dealt with at no less than £2 per head. However in March 1999
the Commission joined the internet on www.cwgc.org. which has simplified
The Burial registers of the two main Brighton Cemeteries, Woodvale and
Hartington Road, record the names of many men who died after the war
from various causes i.e. Influenza, Malaria, and from the results of
being severely gassed. Some of these are dated well into 1921, consequently
details of their Regiments, Regimental number etc. are not available
from CWGC or recorded in SDGW. This also applies in some cases to men
discharged during the war, and who later died at home.
Library has all the wartime copies of the Sussex Daily News and the
Evening Argus plus the Brighton Herald, on microfilm, and these contain
much essential and useful information.
there are many men with Brighton addresses with next of kin in the town,
who were, for various reasons known only to the War Memorial Committees
of the time, never included on the memorial. Thirty three names were
added at a later date (one as late as 1998) but many more appear to
have been excluded. Regular soldiers who were born and enlisted in the
town are frequently left out. During the course of research for this
Memorial and delving into the computerised records and print outs provided
by the CWGC a supplementary list of 254 men has been included as an
example there are four W. Baker’s all born and enlisted in Brighton,
but only one W. Baker on the Memorial. The three omitted will be found
in the addenda.
There are many gaps to fill and much more information urgently needed.
All help in this project will be gratefully received.
Comber December 2007
memorial, because of its size has been split into alphabetical sections.
Click on the appropriate letter or section to see the relevant page